Luke’s Wings Shares a Hero’s Story

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Contact:  Mackenzie Miles

publicrelations@lukeswings.org

www.lukeswings.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 7, 2010) – Luke’s Wings shares a touching story about one of our heroes. It is with the help of our supporters that we can make such a difference in the lives of our wounded warriors and their families.

Our Hero’s Background:

25-year-old SPC Colin P deployed to Iraq from February 2008 to February 2009. During his courageous deployment, Colin experienced an IED blast to his convoy, which resulted in him suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).  He was sent to the Wounded Warrior Transition Unit to heal from his injuries and begin his transition out of the Army and back into civilization.

On June 19, 2010, Colin was involved in a devastating motorcycle accident. The paramedics did not find him until two hours after the crash, lying in a ditch, clinging to what remained of his life. Colin was not given long to live after being found.

At 3:15pm, July 1st, after assessment from his doctors, Colin was only given one and a half hours to live. That’s when Luke’s Wings was called to provide emergency travel for Colin’s mother, Sandra.

Below is the actual correspondence:

July 1, 2010 – 3:18pm (phone call)

M SSF S, Alan: We have an emergency. We have a young soldier in a coma. The doctors are going to pull his life support in an hour and a half. We’re in Colorado, at Fort Carson. Soldier’s mother is in New York. What can we do? Is there anything you can do to get the mother here?

Luke’s Wings: Hang up the phone. Call the mother. Tell her to pack a bag and go to the airport immediately. We will have a flight booked for her by the time she gets there. She will be on the next flight out.

July 1, 2010 – 3:21pm – (Luke’s Wings to our travel agent)

We have an emergency. Soldier’s life support is being terminated at approximately 5pm today due to fatal injuries. We need to evacuate a mother immediately. She won’t make it in time to say goodbye, but she can be there tonight. Please confirm flight booking.

July 1, 2010 – 5:53pm

From: S, Alan M SSG
I want to take the time to tell everyone thank you for the services you offer to our soldiers. You just helped a Soldier’s mom that is about to lose her hero.

Thanks again for everything.
VR SSG S, Alan

July 1, 2010 – 6:27pm (Official Response – Mother is now airborne)

Dear M SSG S,

On behalf of all of us at Luke’s Wings (included on this email), please give our traveler, Sandra Ann P, our best wishes and deepest sympathies when she arrives in Denver tonight. We understand she is on her flight from New York as we speak.

We realize her son, SPC Colin P, has been in a coma for some time and that the doctors let him go at 5pm today, just an hour and a half after informing your staff, Sandra, and us, of their decision to terminate his life support.

We’d like you and everyone at Fort Carson to know this emergency first class ticket was made possible by a check we received yesterday at the Piazza di Giorgio in Tyson’s Galleria. Anthony Labetti and his staff have been collecting donations at their cash registers for some six weeks now. The check was deposited today and will help cover the cost of Sandra’s travel.

We can’t imagine what the long plane ride feels like for her at this moment. She has been without her son for only an hour and is now surrounded by strangers at 30,000 feet…devastated and uncertain.

Colin was our great Republic’s best and most devoted and we are ALL humbled by his commitment and sacrifice.

We are here when you need us. And we are praying for Sandra’s safe arrival in Denver. Again, please give Sandra our deepest sympathies. We will send a prayer to Colin tonight as he looks down to us from Heaven.

With great pride and respect
Luke’s Wings

July 1, 2010 – 7:48pm

From: S, Alan M SSG NG

Thanks to all for this support for this Hero and Sandra. There is a good note. His mom is going to be able to say good-bye tonight. They are waiting for his mom to get to the hospital. I will keep you up to date.

VR SSG S
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July 2, 2010 – 3:05pm (Phone call)

The mother arrived safely last night. Doctors confirmed that, upon arrival of the mother, the soldier is holding on. Colin is very resilient and a tough Warrior. Colin’s current condition report that I got from liaison:

“Not a lot of change. Had an uneventful night, some purposeful movements.  He was up in a Geri Chair this morning for almost two hours.  That is actually a chair that they slide the patient onto while lying down and then put it upright like a recliner.  This allows the patient to alleviate pressure sores and get the body in positions other than lying down. Otherwise stable, but no major changes. Colin is still trying to fight for his life with Sandra and his brother.”

Soldier is still in the coma but is partially responsive. The doctors are giving it another 24 hours. Likelihood of termination: 80%

We will keep you posted.

VR

Staff Sgt. Stark, Alan

July 4, 2010 – 1:19pm

Colin is still in a comma. Sandra is still not doing so great. Colin is still fighting this. Things are looking a lot better than 72hrs ago. Keep praying for this family, the extent of his brain injuries is still unknown.  We will not know the full damage to his brain until the swelling goes down and they can allow him to wake up. The doctors do know that he will have problems for the rest of his life.

Thank you again for the support, Luke’s Wings.

VR

Staff Sgt. Stark, Alan

*** End of correspondence for the time being ***

Without the abiding faith and devoted assistance of our supporters, Luke’s Wings would not have been able to fly Colin’s mother to his bedside, which resulted in a minor, yet ever promising glimpse of hope.

Our hearts go out to Colin and his family during this incredibly difficult time. Please join us in praying for Colin’s recovery and thanking him for being a true hero and for everything he did for our country.

YOU ARE LUKE’S WINGS.

To continue supporting our mission and to finance future flights for Colin’s mother and hundreds of other wounded warrior families, please make a modest monthly donation on our website, or on Facebook. Even $5 a month, when given by everyone, makes this work.

Luke’s Wings is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of service members who have been wounded while fighting for our country.  Recognizing the immediate need for families to be with their loved ones at such a difficult time, Luke’s Wings provides families with the means to visit service members during their hospitalization and rehabilitation.  By purchasing travel agency services and travel tickets for their loved ones, Luke’s Wings provides an immediate and invaluable service to families of our men and women at arms.  For additional information or to make a donation please visit www.lukeswings.org or mail checks to Luke’s Wings Inc. at 20 Ritchfield Court, Rockville, MD, 20850.

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